PSHE KS2: How to make a call to emergency services

A short film teaching pupils how to recognise an emergency and how to make a call to emergency services.

With the help of animated explanations, Dr Emeka outlines how to recognise an emergency (and how to understand when it isn’t an emergency).

He goes through the process of calling the emergency services on the phone and understanding what will be asked of you when you do.

This short film is from the BBC Teach series 'Dr Emeka’s Essential First Aid'.

Teacher Notes

Pupils could learn and acknowledge the LIONEL system that will help them to know what details will be asked of them when they are on the phone to the emergency services.

L - Location - tell them where the emergency is and where they need to come to.
I - Incident - tell them what has happened.
O - Other services - do you need the ambulance and fire service?
N - Number of people - how many are there involved?
E - Extent of injuries - how badly are they hurt?
L - Location - repeat again where they need to come to.

Students should understand that 999 and 112 are both numbers for the emergency services, but 999 is exclusively for use in the UK and 112 can be used in the UK and across Europe (and further) to reach the local emergency services.


Students could be given scenarios and asked whether or not it is an emergency that would require the emergency services.

Students could be asked to recognise possible hazards in an image of an emergency by marking them, or pointing them out.

Pupils could role play different scenarios that would help them to understand which emergency service they need (fire, police or ambulance). They could also role play being on the phone as a person in an emergency and the emergency services operator, in order to understand what questions will be asked of them.

Students could list three locations that they know and say the address for each one.

Students could practise explaining where they are if they don’t know the address - recognising what is near them and explaining what they can see. They could practise using three key words in order to do so.

In pairs, students could describe an area to their partner, without using an address, who then has to guess the location they are talking about.

Other subject areas

Students could learn how to roleplay and improvise, taking on the persona of someone in an emergency, or an operator on the end of the phone.

In geography students could begin to understand maps and how an address helps us identify a location. They could also learn about how local landmarks help you identify an area.

Curriculum Notes

This short film touches on elements of PSHE first aid as introduced to the curriculum in England from September 2020 for Key Stage 2.

While not on the curriculum specifically, it could also be used in Wales and Northern Ireland at Key Stage 2 and in Scotland at 1st and 2nd level.

More from Dr Emeka’s Essential First Aid:

Burns and scalds
Bleeding and shock
Head injuries
Bone fractures
How to administer CPR
How to administer CPR during the Covid-19 pandemic
Bites and stings